USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) posted a request for information (RFI) that will inform the design of a study mandated in recently passed legislation to establish a National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard. Although the study itself is contingent on future funding, the RFI is a first step to gather public input on what the study will examine, which will in turn inform development of the disclosure standard.
Related: Obama signed GMO labeling bill
On July 29, 2016, President Obama signed into law legislation establishing a National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard. AMS will implement the standard.
Under the new standard, companies will have options for disclosing information about bioengineered (GMO) ingredients to consumers – including a disclosure statement on the food label/package, a symbol USDA will develop, or an on-package electronic option that would direct consumers to a website.
Congress mandated that a study be conducted to assess any technological challenges that may impact whether consumers would have access to electronic disclosures on food packages. The RFI includes a draft performance work statement to identify potential technological challenges. To provide input on this RFI, please visit the notice to trade for additional instructions and information. AMS will move forward with soliciting proposals for the study once funding becomes available, as determined by Congress.
AMS will provide extensive opportunities for public input throughout rulemaking process, including comment periods and public meetings to gather the information needed to develop the standard and program. AMS will engage industry stakeholders and consumers to ensure that the final program is established effectively and with the utmost transparency.
For the most current information on the rulemaking process, visit http://www.ams.usda.gov/rules-regulations/gmo. You can also subscribe to get email updates about the progress of the study and the rulemaking process for the national standard.
Source: USDA AMS